The phrase “it takes a village to raise a child” originates from an African proverb and conveys the message that it takes many people (“the village”) to provide a safe, healthy environment for children, where children are given the security they need to develop and flourish, and to be able to realize their hopes and dreams. (Sentence taken from Frontiers in Public Health 11th March 2022)
Creator God, you made us in a way that is part of a whole – a whole community; a whole village; a whole eco-system. We give thanks that you, who are three-in-one, know the value of community. So sharing that bond, you have built into each part of each system the innate knowledge that we belong together.
We pray for the dysfunctional systems we see around us from the one parent families or sole-parental responsibility to the collapse of diverse forests caused by a mono-culture of palm oil (Indonesia) or wheat (Ukraine) or other crops such as corn (USA), cotton, etc. We are not made to be in isolation, we are made to be in integration with all around.
As an entire pod of Pilot Whales were found stranded and dead in Orkney (Scotland) – and research reveals more of the complex families of Orcas – what do these large mammals understand that we have lost? Sympathy goes out to them yet the WFP announced a shortfall of funding in Yemen where women are the sole food provider in over one-third of families and 80% of the population requires humanitarian assistance… and the world turns away.
How can we not protest the lack of education of all older female children in Afghanistan and all beauty salons are shutdown, while wondering at and pointing out to each other the tenacity of the males in many bird species caring for and feeding the female on the nest.
What is wrong with the thinking which, rightly, allows a vole burrowing the bank of a river to delay the opening of a bridge in Norfolk, England, while seeing nothing wrong with the suffering of children in Sudan caught at a border crossing into Egypt?
When, yet again, a faulty computer algorithm, this time Australia’s “robodebt” system, victimizes the poorest and the honest. Lord God, why do we trust systems people have made over the godliness of those attacked? Are we so enamored with ill will that we are unable to trust?
With dozens missing, or dead, in land and mudslides from South Korea to Colombia and the scientists who first warned of climate change announcing humanity will miss the first achievable target to ameliorate it, Lord “what are we that you should keep us in mind, men and women that you care for us?” (Ps 8, Grail version)
It is also said that “A child not embraced by the village, will burn it down to feel its warmth.” The world burns with extreme temperatures across Canada and all round the Mediterranean, are we really burning down the village because we have turned our backs on the warmth of your love? Forgive us, give us the will and the willingness to change our ways to yours, Our Creator.